- Title: Jordanian volunteers raise money for new refugee arts centre
- Date: 6th November 2016
- Summary: (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) RESIDENT AT GAZA CAMP, BASHEER ABU SURDANAH, SAYING: "We paid attention to the issue of music because a number of young people and campaigns appeared in the camp and singing rap and beat-boxing and they also compose music and they like these things. But there are no venues that provide them with this kind of service. To be honest, we would really like to have this place because it makes young people or it enhances their talents to some extent and increases their musical ability, musical culture, let's call it this and boosts the skills that they already have."
- Embargoed: 21st November 2016 13:38
- Keywords: Music arts centre camp Gaza community Amman
- Location: AMMAN, JORDAN
- City: AMMAN, JORDAN
- Country: Jordan
- Topics: Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA00657B2CT1
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: A group of Jordanian volunteers organised a two-day musical performance in Amman with the hope of raising enough money to establish a performing arts centre at the Jerash camp, north of the city.
Known locally as the Gaza camp, it was set up as an "emergency" camp for Palestine refugees and displaced persons who left the Gaza Strip as a result of the 1967 Arab-Israeli war.
Run by a handful of volunteers, grassroots organisation One Love, say they aim to ease the difficult living conditions faced by those living in the camp.
One Love worked in collaboration with the NGO Arab Group for Protection of Nature to hold a performance at al Ahliyyah School for Girls in Jabal Amman on Thursday (November 3) and Friday (November 4) to raise over 11,000 U.S. dollars according to one of One Love's founders Hiba Khoury.
The shows were attended by over 400 people, Khoury said.
"This centre will be the first centre of its kind in the camp (Gaza Camp) and it will focus on art, music and the talents of children and young people, let's say that it will be a starting point for them. Through our visits to the camp, we noticed many talents but as you know the schools there are limited there are not many activities, so we wanted to establish this centre so that it can unleash the talents of young people and children of the camp. We also want to establish the first library in the history of the camp," said Khoury.
The Jordanian choir, Dozan Wa Awtar volunteered to perform at the show.
Founded by Shireen Abu-Khader in 2002, Dozan wa Awtar (Tuning & Strings) promotes Arabic choral music and art projects through teaching, composing and performing music. They are also involved in theatre production, accordion to their official Facebook Page.
"Music is the only thing that remains a positive thing at this time. Nowadays, we only hear bad news and news that annoy us but through music we wanted to bring joy into the hearts of people that need it at this time, this is the time they need joy. Through our music, we want people to feel that there is hope, there is joy in life," said choir conductor, Nedy Muna.
A resident at the camp, Basheer Abu Surdanah welcomed the initiative, saying the project will encourage more young people to engage with music and art as a release at the camp.
"We paid attention to the issue of music because a number of young people and campaigns appeared in the camp and singing rap and beat-boxing and they also compose music and they like these things. But there are no venues that provide them with this kind of service. To be honest, we would really like to have this place because it makes young people or it enhances their talents to some extent and increases their musical ability, musical culture, let's call it this and boosts the skills that they already have," he said.
There are ten recognised Palestine refugee camps throughout Jordan, which accommodate nearly 370,000 Palestine refugees, 18 percent of the country total according to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) website.
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